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Learning verb tenses is one of the most important tasks in any language learning. There are a number of resources at the site that will help you learn tense rules, practice using verbs in different tenses, read sample sentences in a variety of tenses, teach tenses in class, and more.
For an overview of conjugation of all these tenses, use the tense tables or the visual guide to tenses for reference. Teachers can use theses guides on how to teach tenses for further activities and lesson plans in class
Tense Use Rules and Explanations
These explanation resources provide the rules for each tense, as well as examples of proper tense use. Use the time expression commonly used with the tense, as well as the example sentences to help you get started.
Present Simple Every day - When do you get up? / Tom usually eats lunch at home.
Present Continuous Now - She's watching TV at the moment. / I'm not working, I'm reading a newspaper.
Past Simple Yesterday - They went on vacation last July. / Where did you meet Tim?
Past Continuous Yesterday, at X o'clock They were watching TV at 5 o'clock yesterday. / What were you doing when he came home?
Present Perfect Since / For - I've lived here a long time. / Have you ever seen that film?
Past Simple vs. Present Perfect I've lived here for many years. vs. I lived there before I moved to New York.
Present Perfect Continuous Since / For + Time - We've been working since 8 this morning. / What has she been doing recently?
Past Perfect Already - They had already eaten when she arrived. / Had you finished the report by the time he asked for it?
Future with Will Tomorrow, Next week - We'll get together next week. / Will you be able to come tomorrow?
Future with Going to Tomorrow, Next year, semester, etc. - They're going to study Russian next semester. / Where are you going to stay?
Future Perfect By, By the time - I'll have finished by the time he arrives. / Will you have done the work by six?
Future Continuous At X o'clock, This time next year, month, week / What will you be doing this time next year? - She'll be working tomorrow at 10 o'clock.
Conditional Forms If questions - What would you do if you had enough time? / If she is in town, she'll come to the meeting.
Alternate Conditional Forms
Modal Forms Asking Permission, Giving Advice, etc. - May I help you? / He should see a doctor.
Modal Verbs of Probability Stating guesses - He must have stayed at home today. / She might be downstairs.
Tense Use Rules For Beginners
These tense explanations cover basic tenses and are especially for beginners. They include easier English as well as example dialogues of tense use.
Future with Will
Future with Going to
Modal Form Basics
Once you understand the tense use, these quizzes will help you test your knowledge. The more you practice, the more confident you will feel using various tenses.
Past Tenses Review
Simple Past or Present Perfect
Present Perfect or Present Perfect Continuous
Advanced Tense Identification
Passive Forms Quiz
If you have a good understanding of tense use, these pages will help you review tenses as they relate to each other. The resources include a tense timeline, and a special section focusing on auxiliary verbs - the key to verb conjugation.
English Tenses Timeline
Present Tense Auxiliary Verbs
Past Tense Auxiliary Verbs
Future Tense Auxiliary Verbs
Simple vs. Progressive Verbs
Example Sentences in All Tenses
Tense Use Lessons
These lesson plans can be used in your classes. Each lesson plan includes an introduction, a step by step guideline to teaching tense use, and class exercises to be used during the lesson.
A Difficult Situation: Using Modal Verbs of Probability in the Past
A VIP - Present Perfect Simple and Continuous Lesson Plan
Integrating Past Continuous
Time Expressions and Simple Past or Present Perfect
Reported Speech: Developing Production Skills
Tense Review for Advanced Levels